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The Film Institute at Montclair State Partners with NY Film Critics Series, Feb. 26


MONTCLAIR, N.J.  – The Film Institute at Montclair State has partnered with
the New York Film Critic Series to present the second annual Reel Montclair: Academy Award
Edition where four esteemed film critics will discuss the films and performances nominated for
Academy Awards this year.

The event will take place on Monday, February 26, 2018 at 7:30
p.m. in the Presentation Hall in the School of Communication and Media on the Montclair State

Director of Programming for the Film Institute, Susan Skoog will moderate the panel of film
critics to include longtime Star-Ledger film critic Stephen Whitty, Alison Bailes (Sirius,) Thelma
Adams (Us Weekly, New York Post,) and Dwight Brown (NNPA, Essence, Hollywood

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Hollywood has encountered seismic shifts in the last year, and the Oscar nominations reflect a
new, broader sense of inclusiveness. Of the unique nominations this year, Whitty said “It's a year
which saw some of Oscar's youngest nominees, in Timothee Chalamet and Saoirse Ronan -- and
some of its oldest in Christopher Plummer and Agnes Varda. A year which includes a rare
nomination for a female director, Greta Gerwig and a first ever for a female cinematographer,
Rachel Morrison -- yet is also overshadowed by the the ugliness of sexual scandals and pervasive
abuse. A year in which "Get Out" woke up audiences -- and yet some films still struggle to
really represent people of color. I'm looking forward to digging into all of that, along with who I
hope will win (and who I think really will.)

Skoog said, “Reel Montclair is a fun and exciting opportunity for our community of students and
film lovers to have an informative and lively conversation about the best films from this very
eventful year in Hollywood.” Producer of the New York Film Critics Series, Mark Ehrenkranz
said, “We love collaborating with MSU. Our team relishes the opportunity to share resources and
talk about great movies and the industry.”

A two-time former chair of the New York Film Critics Circle, Stephen Whitty writes for the
New York Daily News, The Star-Ledger, and many other sites, newspapers and national
magazines. He has his BFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the arts and has taught and lectured at
NYU, Rutgers, Baruch, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, The
Museum of the Moving Image and the New York Public Library. He appears regularly as a guest
on television and radio, and as a juror at film festivals; his most recent book is “The Alfred
Hitchcock Encyclopedia.”

Alison Bailes reviews movies for WOR710 AM radio, Sirius XM Insight,
and She also co-hosts the New York Film Critics Series and
maintains her own film website She has written for More magazine, and and worked as a correspondent on Roger Ebert presents
“At the Movies”. She produced and hosted the film series “Flashback”. From 2005-
2009 Alison co-hosted the NBC Universal weekly movie review show “Lyons & Bailes Reel
Talk”. She and Jeffrey Lyons shared their different perspectives on the latest film and DVD
releases, gave viewers the latest news from the box office and reported on industry trends.
Thelma Adams is the author of the best-selling historical novel, The Last Woman Standing and
Playdate, which Oprah magazine described as “a witty debut novel.” In addition to her fiction
work, Adams is a prominent American film critic and an outspoken voice in the Hollywood
community. She has been the in-house film critic for Us Weekly and The New York Post, and
has written essays, celebrity profiles and reviews for Yahoo! Movies, The New York Times, O:
The Oprah Magazine, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Parade, Marie Claire and The
Huffington Post. Adams studied history at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was
valedictorian, and received her MFA from Columbia University. She lives in upstate New York
with her family.

Dwight Brown is the film critic for the NNPA News Wire, which syndicates his film reviews to
over 100 newspapers. His film reviews have also appeared in the Hollywood Reporter, HuffPost
and Essence. He’s a past chairman of the New York Film Critics Circle and championed its Best
First Film Category, which spotlights new directors. He has been a juror or speaker at film
festivals in Toronto, Tribeca and Miami. He has appeared as a guest film critic on The Tavis
Smiley Show, Channel 4 London, the Town Hall Feature Film Seminar Series NYC and
Greenwich Classic Films Series. Brown was the Director of the Film and Talent Evaluation
Department at HBO, which scouted films and talent for HBO and Cinemax. He earned his B.A.
and M.A. from San Francisco State University and a NAMIC Executive Leadership
Development Program certificate from the John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management at


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